Changes to Learning Disabilities Under Fire



On Wednesday (8th Nov) at the Somerset County Council's Scrutiny Committee, parents, people with Learning Disabilities, volunteers, staff members and union officials joined forces to present the case to councillors that the changes to Learning Disability Services are not working.

In April this year, Somerset County Council controversially commissioned Dimensions UK Ltd (Discovery) to deliver a £32million a year contract to deliver care services to people with learning disabilities in the County.

Lib Dem spokesman for Adults and Health, Councillor Bill Revans said: 

“The people who spoke shared heartbreaking accounts of their experiences since April. The evidence that the new arrangements for Learning Disability services under Discovery aren’t working is indisputable, they simply are not fit for purpose. The core service depends on highly motivated staff providing quality services to our most vulnerable residents. Huge staff turnover and low morale have led to numerous examples of falling standards and concerns that some service users are not safe or receiving the care they need. The information that the Council uses to monitor the situation was deemed inadequate.”

The Committee was not convinced by a presentation from the Managing Director of Discovery and unanimously voted to set up a group to scrutinize in detail what is going wrong and to refer the contract to it the council’s Audit Committee.

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